Maine Medical Center
Woman holding a newborn baby

Preparing for Your Stay

If you’re planning to deliver your baby at MaineHealth Maine Medical Center Portland (MHMMCP) and have not yet received a pre-admission packet, please call 207-662-6132. We'll provide important information about admissions, directions, maps, our services and additional information about your care.

How do I make a birth plan?

We encourage you to talk with your provider about what you feel is most important about your delivery experience and care. Consider attending Childbirth Education classes to better understand the choices offered by the Family Birth Center at MHMMCP.

How do I choose a doctor for my baby?

Both family medicine doctors and pediatricians care for newborns. Family medicine doctors can care for both you and your baby. Pediatricians care for children and teens. Because your baby is so special, you will want to make your choice carefully. Consider the provider’s reputation and qualifications, your health insurance coverage, and how close the office is to your home or work. 

You will need to choose your baby’s doctor before your stay so MHMMCP can coordinate with that doctor after your baby is born. Most pediatricians will come to the medical center to meet and examine the baby, but some do not. In this case, there are pediatricians at MHMMCP that will examine your baby and send the information to the doctor you have selected. 

What should I pack for my stay?

Pack your hospital bag at least two weeks before your due date so it's ready when when you discover you are in labor. Use this checklist to help decide what to bring. The medical center will have basic toiletries available for you such as toothpaste, a toothbrush, a comb, absorbent pads, panties, a hospital gown, a robe and non-skid socks. But some people bring these items from their home so they can wear clothes and use items that they are comfortable with. We will also provide you with diapers, blankets, and t-shirts for your baby to use in the hospital.

Please leave your jewelry and other valuables at home. Please do not bring or use scented lotions or other personal care products during your stay. Most chemicals used to create fragrances are also respiratory irritants and can trigger asthma, allergies and migraines.

Who will take care of me during my stay?

Our team of physicians, midwives, nurses and educators will work with you and your family to create a safe, comfortable birth experience. If needed, consulting physicians in various specialties such as neonatology, cardiology, genetics and nephrology are also available. You will also have access to the most advanced neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) in the state of Maine, if needed.

The nurses taking care of you are experienced in caring for all types of patients. Your nurse will explain all procedure to you and make sure that you and your family understands all aspects of your care. Your labor & delivery nurse will assist you through labor and the birth of your baby by showing you and your support person different comfort measures to use during labor. Your postpartum nurse will care for you and your baby after the birth. They will teach you and your family members what to expect postpartum and how to care for your baby after you go home. The nurse may work with a certified nursing assistant (CNA) who performs basic bedside tasks for your comfort and care.

MHMMCP is a teaching hospital. We have resident doctors who are closely guided by attending physicians. 

A resident is a doctor who works at the hospital while being trained to be an obstetrician/gynecologist, pediatrician, or family practice physician. An attending physician has completed a residency (at least four years in their specialty) and may have done some additional training (a two- or three-year fellowship).

You may also meet medical students during your stay. They are here to learn about pregnancy and childbirth. They may do your physical examination and take your medical history.

We have a team of international board-certified lactation consultants (IBCLCs) who specialize in breastfeeding support. A lactation consultant can help with:

  • Breastfeeding advice before your baby is born
  • Creating a feeding plan for your baby or babies
  • Milk supply concerns
  • Suggestions to address discomforts or challenges during breastfeeding, pumping and infant feeding
  • Information about pasteurized donor human milk from the Mothers Milk Bank Northeast (MMBNE)
  • And any other questions related to human milk feeding and lactation

MHMMCP has two advanced practice mental health clinical nurse specialists. They can help with issues related to your birthing experience such as:

  • Stress management during a long hospital stay
  • Postpartum anxiety or depression
  • Coping with the birth of an baby with special needs
  • Talking about past birth experiences
  • Pregnancy loss
  • Dealing with the stress of new parenthood

Social workers can provide support and counseling to help you and your family with the hospital stay. They can help with:

  • Financial help and information
  • Finding a place for family to stay
  • Support from other parents
  • Neonatal Intensive Care Unit tours
  • Referral to your community or home hospital resources
  • Planning for your discharge

If you or your baby have special health care concerns that need attention after you are discharged, our discharge planner will work with you to be sure that you are connected with the services you need.

Pregnancy/Parenting Education

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Patient Testimonials

"I can honestly say we had the best experience possible at MaineHealth Maine Medical Center Portland. The nurses were beyond helpful and comforting. We are first-time parents and really appreciated all of the advice, feedback, and overall help with our newborn. Thank you all again for helping us get our baby started off in the right direction."